It’s always pleasant to be able to review a guitar manufactured by C. F. Martin and Company. Martin has been the trusted name in guitars for more than a century. I am going to focus here on the all mahogany Martin 000-15m acoustic, which I found to be one jewel of an instrument. It is a thing of beauty in its all mahogany design, and it is a delight to play and to hear. It may just be one of the best blues acoustic guitars around.
I did find some imperfections in the instrument, but they are very minor and more personal.
This Martin has its roots in the history of blues. The triple zero -15m is a modern day continuation of the Series 15 guitars that C. F. Martin introduced during America’s Great Depression of the 1930s.
It was a guitar made strictly for the blues musician of that era. It carried a low price tag, but had a highly respected, coveted sound. I picked one up at my local dealer’s and it captured my heart as soon as I lifted from the rack. It has a magnificent feel to it. It is light and comfortable to the touch, and begs to be played. This is the kind of guitar that can easily become your best friend. Once you start playing it, it seems to become a part of you. It’s almost impossible to put it down once you pick it up.
It Packs a Blues Punch, But Can Move Easily to Other Genres
You may have some doubts about this guitar. Perhaps you think it is not the blues guitar that so many musicians rave about. We have something that may help you.
This acoustic is made to play blues, and I think it is capable of playing the blues as well as any guitar on the market.
Let me tell you why I like this instrument so much. When I first pulled the triple zero-15m off the rack at my dealer’s show room, I started in on some finger picking and a young boy walked up and started watching me. Soon his father was by his side. “Can you play some blues on that acoustic?” the dad said. I told him that this particular Martin had long been noted as a blues guitar and was ideal for playing the blues.
The father and the son observed as I began picking some blues licks in the keys of E and E7. Then, I went low on the neck and started my instrumental rendition of Willie Nelson’s classic “Night Life.”
This truly is a guitar made to play the blues, and the dad and his son seemed impressed. “I guess that’s a pretty expensive guitar,” the father said. I didn’t know, but looked at the tag dangling from the guitar and was surprised. It read $1, 299. “That’s inexpensive for a Martin,” the father said. I agreed with him. “I think I’ll just buy one, mister. Do you think it would be a good guitar for my son to have to start learning how to play?” “How old are you, son?” “Ten.” I looked at his dad and said, “If you can afford it, buy it, sir.” “I will,” he said. “Merry Christmas.” “Merry Christmas.”
Okay, it is a guitar meant for the blues, but I think it could hold its own and make a statement in other musical genres and arenas as well. This would include:
- Finger-picking blue grass performers
- Rock, country and jazz instrumentalists
- Gospel praise and worship leaders
- Singer-songwriters and studio guitarists across the whole musical spectrum
It Rings With A Clear Sweet and Mellow Sound
Guitarists who are seeking a crisp sound in an acoustic guitar will be pleased as soon as they start playing the Martin 000-15m. It has a rich tone that can be subtle and soft or loud and bell-ringing depending on who is playing it. The warm tonal effect that this guitar emits is clear, sweet and balanced. It’s a mellow tone that can be credited mostly to the South American, dark mahogany that goes into the construction of the Martin acoustic.
As you hit each individual string, and move up and down the neck, you find there is a significant level of uniformity in the guitar’s tonal reaction to your touch. The tonal response is consistently sharp and resonates with a quality and clearness that can light up a room.
As you play chords or notes of your choice, you begin to have an awareness that you have found a real nugget among acoustic guitars. That is what you have in this Martin, a gem of a guitar that has a stunning sound to accompany its remarkable playability.
It Features a Fashionable, Handsome, Basic Design
Acoustic guitars constructed entirely of mahogany are presently enjoying a tremendous amount of popularity. We can say with all sincerity that the Martin 000-15 will undergo an increase in value, simply because it is made of mahogany.
The guitar features a classic body size. It may be a bit smaller than its big brother dreadnought, but it is not considered a parlor guitar. It is the perfect fit for most guitarists. When you look closer at the Martin 000-15m, you notice it has only 14 playable frets on its fretboard. The fretboard, by the way, is made of rosewood from East India.
I think it is one of the best looking guitars on the market. It doesn’t have many frills but looks outstanding in its back-to-the-basics design. It currently is a fashion piece among modern guitarists. All-mahogany guitars are “in,” and are prevalent today, wherever artists and singer-songwriters gather.
In Conclusion: I Give It a Thumbs Up. Buy It If Possible
The flaws I mentioned earlier are minor and personal. I know it is an acoustic guitar, but I think many guitarists will turn away from the instrument because it has no pickup built into it. No electricity. This issue can be resolved, of course, by simply purchasing a pickup and placing it in the hole of the guitar. There are many reliable pickups on the market.
Another flaw is one that other guitarists have complained about. There is no place on the neck to attach a strap. You can remedy this issue, too, by installing the accessory or by running twine from your strap and tying it under the strings at the top of the guitar.
In concluding, I would recommend this Martin 000-15m. The price is overwhelming low for such a top-of-the-line product. It is playable and will meet the needs of all guitarists, be they beginners or in a more advanced stage. Even if you don’t play the guitar, you can be assured that this Martin is a good investment. As already mentioned above, this beauty will increase greatly in value as years go by.